Friday, September 20, 2013

The Struggle

Every married couple has faced it at some point: How many kids do we want? Sometimes the decision is easy and both agree on the same number, boom, its done. Others go back and forth for years, one trying to convince the other. Then once the decision is made there is the waiting game to see how long it takes to get to the desired number of children.

For us it is a little different, not so cut and dry. After years of infertility, a miscarriage, two surgeries, and thousands of dollars in medical bills we were blessed with two miracle babies. Our second was born (after a traumatic birth) with a minor birth defect and his first year is still a blur of doctor appointments, trips to the hospital, sleepless nights, tears and prayers. He is finally outgrowing it and it made me start thinking about another. Then a devastating miscarriage at 9 weeks with twins (see my post here if you missed it). That made me decide that I was done.

Four months later, a friend shared a little pearl of wisdom with me. She was telling me about a book she had read that said not to plan your family size based on infancy, plan it on how many people you want around your Thanksgiving table.

Immediately the number 5 popped into my head (coincidence? I think not. Pretty sure Holy Spirit prompted that one). That was settled, five kids.

Of course Matt was all for it. He says, "the more the merrier!"

Seems like we are good to go, right? Nothing left to discuss, problem solved. Wrong!

Now comes my internal struggle as a mom. I had a dream over 5 years ago of us having three kids. Matt and I have always wanted to adopt and since we wanted a large family we decided that it would be great to adopt siblings. So it seems logical that we would want to have one more biological kid and then adopt a set of two siblings. My mind seems to have everything figured out, but my heart is struggling.

Here are the things that I "know" with my mind:
             With PCOS, 1 in 5 pregnancies ends in a miscarriage
             There are over 4,000 possible birth defects
             1 in 160 pregnancies results in a stillbirth
             12% of babies are born prematurely

The thought of another miscarriage or having a baby born too early, a terminal baby, etc makes my heart ache. I find myself washed in tears when I think about another miscarriage.

Then there are the things that I "know" with my heart:
             God is ALWAYS good
             God works ALL things together for good for those who trust Him
             Everything that happens WILL be redeemed for God's glory
             There are a million reasons that something bad can happen, but ONE reason why it will be okay

So here is the struggle; somewhere between my aching heart and my vision of 7 around a Thanksgiving table. I feel like I am stuck between the altar and the door, between Golgatha and Bethany, between now and forever, between heaven and hell. Seems like that is exactly where we are supposed to be.

"Friends, this world is not your home..."
~1 Peter 2:11a (The Message)

We are in this world, but not of it. We live here but this is not our home. Our constant struggle is having our bodies living on the earth and our minds and hearts living in heaven. The world is full of turmoil, strife and chaos. But in heaven there is no fear, no sorrow and no hurting; there is only love and joy and freedom

"Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails." ~1 Corinthians 13:7
       I have seen this love that Jesus has for our children. Ones that have lived a full life and ones that have only lived in the womb. This love is purer and truer than any love I could ever give my child, 

Joy would celebrate the life of a baby (which yes, begins at conception). 

And Freedom says that death on this earth is only the beginning! 

When we can separate our worldly thoughts from those of heaven, it seems there isn't really a struggle after all. 

1 comment:

  1. Just my two cents. Adding to a family with adoption is a great way to go. Those kids are picked especially for you by God himself. That said, those kids are not perfect either, but they add immeasurably to the fun and drama and joy that is family.